Hong Kong City Guide

Three Australian movers and shakers with abundant insider knowledge share their Hong Kong hotspots – with some common favourites!
Iain Dawson, gallerist, Iain Dawson Gallery, Sydney.

I love the whole experience of the China Club. Owned by Hong Kong celebrity business man Sir David Tang, it showcases his amazing collection in the original Bank of China building in Central. It has such a beautiful colonial vibe. You can really imagine yourself back in the days of the British Empire rule in Hong Kong. The food is traditional Chinese and served with fantastic style and sophistication. The China Club, Floors 13 & 14, Old China Bank Building, Bank St, Central. Ph: +852 2521 8888.

I’m constantly exploring dumpling houses and local cafes and restaurants for specialties and love to be adventurous when in Hong Kong. A tradition for me is brunch with friends at The Press Room. A fantastic bistro that reminds me of Sydney, with gorgeous coffee and a house specialty of Lobster Benedict and the best omelette on the island. These brunches often stretch past midday, when the huge wine list is well utilised! The Press Room, 108 Hollywood Road, Hong Kong. Ph: +852 2525 3444. www.thepressroom.com.hk

I tend to avoid the super malls, as attractive as they are – I prefer the street level markets and shops. The markets on the Kowloon side are incredible and inspirational! Sheung Wan on HK island has become a mecca of design, furniture and art – a must-see destination, Gough Street is a favourite.

For men’s fashion, I always visit Moustache on Aberdeen Street. Run by ex-pat Americans, this is east-meets-west tailoring at its best. Moustache, 31 Aberdeen St, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 2541 1955 www.moustachehongkong.com.

For gifts, stationery and limited-edition fashion collaborations, I swing past the MONOCLE shop in Wan Chai. Monocle Shop 1 UG, Bo Fung Mansion, 1-4 St. Francis Yard,
 Wanchai. Ph: +852 28042323 shop.monocle.com/stores/hongkong

Cat Street Gallery, Hollywood Road for Australian and up-and-coming Chinese artists;
Gagosian Gallery
for the big names and the newly opened London’s White Cube Gallery for Asian and European blockbusters. 
The Cat Street Gallery, 222 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan
. Ph: +852 2291 0006.thecatstreetgallery.com.
Gagosian, Level 7, Pedder Building, 12 Pedder Street, Central
. Ph: +852 2151 0555. gagosian.com.
White Cube Gallery, 50 Connaught Road, Central. Ph:
+852 2592 2000. whitecube.com

As much as staying on Hong Kong island has its advantages, I’ve recently become a convert to Kowloon. In particular, it’s the W that’s brought me there. It’s an amazing experience, from the mind-blowing breakfasts to the 76th-floor pool and bar. I love every second being there. It’s also on the trainline from the airport, which means I can check my luggage at the station below the hotel and get to the airport hassle free. W Hotel 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon Station. Ph: +852 3717 2222. starwoodhotels.com/whotels


Grant Pearce, editorial director, GQ, Conde Nast Asia Pacific.

At Zuma, discover fusion Japanese with the freshest sushi and sashimi and an amazing cold tofu with condiments. Great decor and chic atmosphere. Zuma, Level 5 & 6, The Landmark, 15 Queen’s Road, Central. Ph: +852 3657 6388. zumarestaurant.com.

Yardbird is a new and very hot eatery with an interesting menu that includes yakitori-style skewers and great salads. Very fashionable crowd. Yardbird, 33-35 Bridge Street, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 2547 9273. yardbirdrestaurant.com.

Posto Pubblico serves casual Italian with a fun and buzzy environment and excellent food. Handmade burata and vine-ripened tomatoes are a specialty, as are the delicious veal meatballs. Posto Pubblico, 28 Elgin Street, Central. Ph: +852 2577 7160. postopubblico.com

Lane Crawford
in the IFC mall is one of the best department stores in the world and has a brilliant selection of the latest in fashion, accessories, homewares and, in particular, shoes. They also have a live art gallery that becomes part of the decor and changes regularly. Many other interactive ideas make for a great experience every visit. Lane Crawford, Podium 3, ifc mall, 8 Finance Street, Central. Ph: +852 2118 3388. lanecrawford.com

A brilliant new men’s store exclusively for the man in the know, The Armoury offers bespoke suiting mixed with the best of English sartorial splendor.  A must for any aspiring or perfected gentleman. The Armoury, Level 3, Pedder Building, 12 Pedder St, Central. Ph: +852 2804 6991. thearmoury.com.

The new Comme des Garçons store is well worth a visit. It has an ever-changing layout that focuses on different collections and seasons. It also has an art installation space that features up-and-coming artists. Comme des Garçons, Shop B2, 10 Ice House Street, Central. Ph: + 852 2869 5906. comme-des-garcons.com

Star Street in Wan Chai, an eclectic mix of new fashion stores, galleries and some gorgeous intimate restaurants, Cat Street Gallery, a super cool art gallery featuring some of the hottest new artists from around the world. Cat Street Gallery, 222 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 2291 0006. thecatstreetgallery.com

Hong Kong has so many choices for accommodation both on Hong Kong island and Kowloon. For me, there are three favourites:

Located at Pacific Place, The Upper House is a very contemporary hotel, fitted with all the latest technology which is controlled from an iPhone in each room. Stunning decor in muted tones offers a calm complemented by the abundance of natural light. The huge bathrooms are sensational and the products are REM which are all natural. Service is also impeccable. The Upper House, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway. Ph: +852 2918 1838. upperhouse.com.

Once in your life, The Peninsula experience is a must-do. From the famous Rolls Royce airport transfer to the classic afternoon tea in the grand lobby, you are transported to a bygone era where travel was a luxury. The Peninsula, Salisbury Road, Kowloon. Ph: +852 2920 2888. peninsula.com.

Recently refurbished, the Mandarin Oriental is my home away from home. Beautifully appointed, the rooms are equipped for every need both business and leisure. There are two decors to choose from and the service is beyond compare. No detail is left untouched.
Mandarin Oriental, 5 Connaught Road, Central. Ph: +852 2522 0111. mandarinoriental.com/hongkong/

Mandy D’Abo, gallerist, Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong.

Hordes flock to Yardbird, an izakaya/yakitori restaurant that’s the brainchild of Matt Abergel, previously of Masa in New York and Zuma in Hong Kong Central. Cool, hip, delish… and you can’t book! It’s only open for dinner so have cocktails in Oolaa just up the road until a table becomes available. Its well worth the wait – try the mouth-watering fried chicken and kewpie mayonnaise. Yardbird, 33-35 Bridge St, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 2547 9273. yardbirdrestaurant.com. Oolaa, CentreStage, Ground floor, Bridges Street, Soho. Ph: +852 2803 2083. casteloconcepts.com/locations/hong-kong/oolaa-hong-kong.

A wonderfully eclectic bustling cafe, Heirloom Eatery spills out onto the sidewalk opposite the retro Hollywood Park. It’s lovely to look out over green bamboo as you tuck into best guacamole and pomegranate dip in town. With incredible Balinese fish tacos and watermelon margaritas, it’s fab for Sunday brunch. Heirloom Eatery, 226 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 547 8008. heirloomhk.com

The Monogamous Chinese is the newest Sichuan and Peking restaurant to open in Soho, underneath the escalator. Art Deco, dark and moody with red lanterns hanging from the ceiling – do not leave without ordering the deep-fried tofu with spicy garlic and salt. Mouth-popping hot and delicious. Hot hot hot! The Monogamous Chinese, 59 Caine Road, Soho. Ph: + 852 2523 2872. themonogamouschinese.com

The Four Seasons is faultless. Take advantage of the best hotel pool in Hong Kong and sit poolside with club sandwiches and a daiquiri. A sanctuary in the midst of this bustling city, the spa is second to none and Blue Bar on the lobby level is one of my favourite city bars. It has great nibbles and cocktails and is always great for people watching. Four Seasons, 8 Finance Street, Central. Ph: +852 3196 8888. fourseasons.com/hongkong/

Central Park Hotel is where all my artists stay. Its great if you just need a very central, reasonably priced place to lay your head after shopping, exploring and partying. Simple and clean with no frills its bang in the middle of all the action. Central Park Hotel, 263 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan. Ph: + 852 2850 8899. centralparkhotel.com.hk

The Upper Houseis my favourite hotel in the world and super glam. You are made to feel like not only a rock star but treated by the staff as if you are the only person in the world. They take service to the next level and make you feel like an old friend. It has awesome bathrooms that look out over Hong Kong, and a fabulous bar with the best martinis. You may never leave. The Upper House, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Central. Ph: +852 2918 1838. upperhouse.com

Stop by eccentric men’s fashion store and tailor Moustache. The interior design is inspired by old Hong Kong in the 1970s.
, 31 Aberdeen Street, Sheung Wan. Ph: +852 2541 1955. moustachehongkong.com

General Store is a super-cool neighbourhood shop that sells antiques and furniture from 20th-century America and Europe. Its full of gems. General Store, Shop H, 41 Gage Street, Central. Ph: +852 2851 8144. generalstoreltd.com

A teeny-weeny pocket-sized shop and a gem for fashion lovers, Buttonhole is bursting at the seams with runway pieces at a fraction of the original price due to small factory mistakes, its inventory changes daily… So grab your finds and run!
, 58 Peel Street, Central. Ph: +852 2899 2069.

Cat Street
(or Upper Lascar Row) in Sheung Wan, if you’re looking for antiques or antique-like knick knacks and collectibles, come a-rustling here. From Chairman Mao propaganda statues to old clocks, pocket watches and strings of jade.

The Dragon’s Back is an incredible hike with jaw-dropping views out to sea. After walking the trail, finish off with well-deserved Thai meal and a beer at Shek O Village Thai restaurant on the roundabout – the pineapple rice and hot and sour soup is off the charts. The Dragon’s Back, 303 Shek O Village, Shek O. Ph: + 852 2809 4426.

Man Mo Templeis one of my favourite places in Hong Kong. Worshippers visit the temple to burn thousands of incense sticks as a sign of good fortune. The temple dates back to the early 1840s, created as a sign of devotion of man to literature and civilisation. Man Mo Temple, Hollywood Road & Ladder Street, Western District. Ph: + 852 2803 2916.

Visit our Facebook page to find out how you can win a trip for two to the Hong Kong International Art Fair, valued at over $19,000.
Entries close May 2, 2012!
5 Responses to “Hong Kong City Guide”
  1. Lagos says:

    I am impressed this is inside stuff. Wait did I just complement a magazine blog.

  2. Cecilia Ma says:

    just wanted to book a table right after seeing the guide!

  3. Sherena says:

    This is very good information even for the
    Hkg people!thanks for sharing!

  4. roomcritic says:

    Reblogged this on RoomCritic and commented:
    We loved these recommendations and will be going to as many of these spots as possible!

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